Five Stars, Jennifer Moore, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence

Feminism for the Ages

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I love books that show that women can be feminine and strong. Strong women don’t all fit the same mold. By page 7 of Jennifer Moore‘s latest release Solving Sophronia I was already fascinated with all the future members of The Blue Orchid Society.

 

This series wont be books all about reporters, or all about nurses, each subsequent book with take it’s own unique direction and I can’t wait to get to know each of these strong female characters individually.

The tension between Sophie and Jonathan was very well written right from the beginning of the book. However I loved that it wasn’t the cliche cop versus reporter tension. Jonathan’s character definitely had the cop pride gruffness, but he also understood Sophie’s worth and quickly saw her as an asset not an inconvenience. Luckily that didn’t lesson the wonderful tension between the two, it made it more real and unique.

The book was full of delightfully written scenes, witty banter, fun character idiosyncrasies, and a gripping mystery. I could literally gush about how much I enjoyed this book.

I was interested through out the book on how the author was going to reconcile Sophie and Jonathan’s class difference. I felt a little underwhelmed with the two paragraph resolution at the end of the book. I’d be interested to know a few more details about how they merge their lives. Maybe I’ll be lucky enough to get glimpses of that in the subsequent Blue Orchid Society books, which by the way I’m already anxiously anticipating.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!!

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0ae98b8a222/

Anneka Walker, Five Stars, Four Stars, Heather B. Moore, Jennifer Moore, Julie Wright, Low Language, Low Religion, Low Romance, Low Violence, Melanie Jacobson, Rachael Anderson, Sarah M. Eden, Three Stars, Timeless Romance Anthologies

So Little Time…

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Weekly Reading Round Up

I find myself intensely jealous of all those talking about all the reading they’re getting down during their stay at home….my reading opportunities have significantly decreased.

Between five people stuck in the same house and schooling at home, I’m loving our time together, but it’s hard to really get into a book when you’re interrupted every five minutes. I’ve found a new love and appreciation for novella’s, for just this reason.

My favorite novella I read this week is a prequel to Jennifer Moore’s new series, The Blue Orchid Society. Book One releases May 1st.

Emmeline by Jennifer Moore41jL4JnHdFL

I really enjoyed the depth of the characters in this story. That can be a hard thing to manage in a novella. Both Arthur and Emmeline were very well written. The very first scene drew me into the story and I was hooked all the way through. I admit I was a little thrown by the interesting use of psychic abilities in the novel, but it didn’t detract from the story in anyway and made me interested to see if that plays a part in the series to come as a whole. I’m so very excited to dive into Solving Sophronia this weekend.

**** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

A Monumental Love by Susan Aylworth 41X6TWrTLfL

This story was set in the Navajo Nation, a new setting for me. You can tell the author either has first hand knowledge or has definitely done her research. The knowledge of the land and culture was very detailed. I however felt those details and the over all plot didn’t flow together well. The story itself was sweet, but I didn’t ever feel a connection to the setting, plot or characters as I would have liked.

** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

Her Three Suitors by Anneka Walker 51cyWQIAEpL

I love fairy tale re-tellings and was very curious to see where the author went with Goldilocks and the Three Bears.  It is obviously not a well used fairy tell as far as romance authors go. I was impressed with the subtle nods to the fairy tale. The plot was a little heavy on the drama and angst, but the relationship between the three friends (bears) was done really well and fun to read. Sophia’s character seemed a little flighty and rash. I would’ve liked a little more depth to her and her family, something that can be hard to achieve in a novella. 

*** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

Love at the House Party by Kasey Stockton51V2sJeRaCL

This was the only full length novel I’ve read recently. Mowing the lawn today while I left the kiddos inside with daddy was a much needed break and allowed me to finally finish it.

This is the first novel I’ve read by this author. Originally I had a hard time getting into the story because of how similar it was to other stories I’d read lately. While not wholly original, the story was really well written. The characters were engaging and had good dimension. I felt connected enough to the story to know I was missing some subtleties as far as side characters went and found myself looking for other books the author has written. Happilly, this is book 3 in the series, looks like I just upped my growing tbr pile.

*** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

 

Summer Wedding Collection (A Timeless Romance Anthology Book 3)51OTcGq0cxL

This collection has stories from some of my favorite authors: Melanie Jacobson, Julie Wright, Rachael Anderson, Annette Lyon, Heather B Moore and Sarah Eden.

I don’t always love every story in these collections, but with a line-up like that you can bet I loved them all. This was actually a re-read for me, and just as good the second time around!

***** Low Language, Low Violence, Low Romance, Low Religion

3 1/2 Stars, Jennifer Moore, Low Language, Low Religion, Moderate Romance, Moderate Violence

Secret to Success

My husband is afraid of spiders, scream like a little girl afraid. I’m the designated spider killer in our house, and that’s completely okay with me, because the things that my husband does for me far outweigh my ability to kill spiders for him. There is a scene in Jennifer Moore‘s The Shipbuilder’s Wife where Lydia and Jacob have a conversation I swear I’ve had a million times with my husband and it seriously made me so happy. Lydia concludes the conversation with, “If you hold me when I have a frightening dream, I will smash spiders for you.” And I thought, that right there is the secret to success in a marriage.

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“The day of her parents’ garden party dawns bright as Lydia Prescott eagerly anticipates a marriage proposal from a handsome and wealthy plantation owner. The lovely debutante plans to steal a moment away with her beau, but her plans go terribly awry. Instead of her intended, she is joined by a stranger the largest man she’s ever laid eyes on. And it is clear Jacob Steele is there for reasons far more sober than the party. With British raids erupting all around them, it is his job to reassure plantation owners of their safety. In reality, however, Jacob is an espionage agent, and the truth is dire: America is on the verge of invasion by the British.

Blissfully unaware of the danger surrounding her, Lydia basks in the glow of her recent engagement. But her joy is short-lived—a surprise British attack results in a devastating wound, and her plans for the future are shattered. Lost in her devastation, Lydia could never dream that Jacob, that giant of a man she met so briefly, would prove to be her saving grace. And with a war raging around them, she may be called upon to save him too.”

Jennifer Moore always creates compelling characters with relatable struggles to overcome. Giving good insight into her characters through relevant character introspection so we feel like we’re right there along with them.

Her books are always well researched, but she often makes plot jumps that are hard for me to follow. Jacob marrying Lydia was one of those. It seemed an out of the blue and illogical step. But I love how she used that later in the story for him to have that introspection she’s so good at about why he really married her in the first place.

I also had a hard time following the timeline at times, but found myself really invested in the characters, so much so that I really hope all of her hints about Alden’s mysterious experiences mean we’ll get to have a book about him down the road.

See our Review of Lydia’s brother Emmett’s book in “My Dearest Enemy” here.

Four Stars, Jennifer Moore, Low Language, Low Religion, Moderate Romance, Moderate Violence

Sides

I’ve been trying to teach my kids that there are multiple sides to every conflict. Every time they come running to me ready to tattle, “Sister/Brother…” I stop them there, “I don’t want to know what they did, what did you do?” Every single time the next sentence goes something like this, “Well I…but…” So often we don’t see the other person’s point of view or our own culpability.

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Struggling alone on the family farm, Abigail Tidwell knows exactly who to blame for her hardships: the Americans. If it weren’t for their part in the war, her father and brothers would be home rather than fighting abroad. But no amount of antipathy could have prepared her for the shocking sight of a wounded American soldier on her property, a man in dire need of her help. Grudgingly, Abigail tends to the soldier’s injuries and anticipates the satisfaction of turning him over to the authorities once he is healed. But fate has other plans. Captain Emmett Prescott remembers little of the ambush on his men by a group of Shawnee Indians and even less about how he arrived in the unfamiliar barn.

After being nursed back to health by beautiful, if reluctant, Abigail, Emmett would do anything to save the men he left behind—including forcibly enlisting Abigail’s help. Soon, Abigail finds herself caught between two countries at war. And as her attraction for Emmett grows, her conflicted heart engages in its own silent battle. But when she is accused of treason for her actions, her survival rests in the hands of the very man she once considered her enemy.

This novel was not only a beautiful blend of fact and fiction, but also a good reflection of the feelings on both sides of the conflict.

The author used clever ways of transitioning between chapters and topics. She was able to balance between the heavy, the chemistry and the light making the story all those things, yet not too much.

Near the end when Abigail and Emmett separate I was unclear about the cause of the split. The author did a great job of showing the respective characters inner thoughts, but they never really expressed them to each other. I was left feeling odd about the whole exchange and confused on why they hadn’t actually communicated with each other. When they said essentially, I’m staying and you’re leaving and there’s no middle ground, it was disconcerting.

I appreciated the conversation between Emmett and his sister that cleared up his lack of understanding of her being needed and wanted. It gave a good resolution to the characters she’d created, but I feel like the conflict could have still been there and the split still happened but with a little more communication to not leave the reader confused and at odds with the story.

The rest of romance and the conflict the war created was just the right amount of sweetness and adventure.

See our review of Emmett’s sister Lydia’s book “The Shipbuilder’s Wife” here.